How to pry secrets from people and have them thank you for it

The classic way to get a friend to spill the beans?

Buy them a drink or three.

Sometimes things are classics for a reason. Other times, they’re outdated and ineffective ways of doing things.

Think about it:

Let’s say you want to loosen a secret from a friend’s lips.

Do you pry them open with brute force, shining a lamp in their face and going full interrogator on them?

Of course not.

But if you liquor them up, one of three things will happen:

They’ll get suspicious.

They’ll get drunk and keep their secret.

Or they’ll tell you, then regret it the next day.

Either way, that’s not so great.

The better approach?

Get them to want to tell you.

Don’t “trick” them into it – make it easier for them to share the secret than to keep it.

I’ve had folk do this to me. Sometimes they knowingly used techniques like this. Other times, they happened to luck onto the formula.

No matter what, though, I was always grateful for it.

It was such a relief to share the secret in a safe and trusting environment, with someone who cares.

By itself, caring isn’t enough to open someone up. But it is essential. If you want to do someone harm, it’s hard to get anything deep and meaningful.

When you genuinely want good things for them?

Anything becomes possible.

Your attitude is half of it.

Knowing how conversations work is the other half.

Here’s your guide to mastering everything from greetings to small talk to soul-wrenching confessions:

P.S. I’m running a flash sale on Conversation Hacker… and it’s half over. For the next day and a bit, you can download it for 55% off. Use the code SMALLTALK at the checkout.

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